Sammath and Standvast have been booked to play the Diabolical Echoes PT 2 mini-festival with Norwegian black metal band Isvind in Groesbeek in the Netherlands on February 24th, 2018. Sammath is one of Death Metal Underground’s most highly praised modern bands while Standvast is an Ildjarn-like project from Nortfalke from Tarnkappe, Kjeld, and Kaeck. Sammath has long been a mainstay of our staff’s list of the The Best Underground Metal of the year so live shows from them should be a furious storm of riffs and whiplash.
Emperor are currently preparing to tour in celebration of the twentieth anniversary their second album, the third rate Anthems to the Welkin at Dusk. While Emperor kept on wearing armor, Anthems to the Welkin at Dusk saw Emperor simplify their trademark complex, almost symphonic Norwegian black metal sound down to two to three note speed metal influenced riffs with neo-classical wank leads in conventional verse-chorus-verse heavy metal songs to appeal to a wider, Wacken-going audience.
Havukruunu, despite their Burzum like cover, worship Bathory‘s Blood Fire Death and 1980s synth pop on Kelle Surut Soi. Havukruunu attempt the folk choruses, epic atmosphere, and melodic solos as Quorthon did in his successful attempt at mixing black and speed metal. Unfortunately for my ears, Havukruunu are not so successful on Kelle Surut Soi.
Article contributed to Death Metal Underground by Cullen Toner.
Longtime MetalSucks editor and self-proclaimed snowflake Emperor Rhombus released a 1,256 word editorial professing his love for Nazi culture and aesthetics on the site’s apparently unregulated front page. The move was seen as an obvious reach to the NatSoc community as MetalSucks attempts to appease the young users of the glowingly popular 4chan image boards by creating articles to reflect the national socialist posts on /pol. The article was immediately praised by the legions of anti-Semites that frequent the site’s comment’s section as they proclaiming their support of the site’s newfound Nazi sympathy with comments like “Hitler did nothing wrong” and “(Emperor Rhombus) knows what is good for the goyim.”
Op de beenderen van onze voorvaderen is yet another another Dutch black metal record heavily influenced by Gorgoroth and Zyklon-B like Tarnkappe. Elfsgedroch however structures riffs as hyper-extended, arpeggiated tremolo-picked chords in incredibly long to the point of droning phrases in the manner of French Canadian band Sorcier des Glaces, who are indeed the band’s primary influence. Clever but occasionally too sappy harmonies similar to Master’s Hammer‘s Bartok and folk influenced heavy metal ones on Ritual but way more annoying pervade the record.
Another previously unreviewed record judged some of The Best Underground Metal of 2016.
Mount Um + 1997 Demo is a digital anthology collecting what Steve Cefala judged to be Dawning‘s strongest material. Half the run-time (“Side A”) is one new, extended track entitled Mount Um in three parts: “Pilgrimage to Umunhum”, “The Albino Bridge Sacrement”, and a melodic bass outro. Mount Um sounds like Summoning worshiping Emperor‘s In the Nightside Eclipse in a lengthy composition reminiscent of Celtic Frost‘s album work. Ambient fantasy keyboards are perverted into pandemonium as if on an arduous journey of great hardship and loss culminating in a bittersweet victory over the uncaring, vicious forces of nature. Mount Um‘s composition is progressive and profound.
I reached out to Nortfalke from Tarnkappe to see if he would answer some of our staff’s questions. Here we go:
2016 is over. The funderground mentality continued spreading forth, infesting metal over the last year just the same as it had in the decades past the genre’s artistic high-point in the early nineties. Rehashes of past greats pandering to a lowest common denominator audience continue to dominate the release schedules of metal labels all too willing to please the lemmings with music fit to safely ignore during drunken socializing. Ever-flowing streams of posers are desperate to be rock stars, pumping out plagiarism, and paying their way to record deals. File sharing and streaming reducing the cost of hearing new music to essentially nothing has led fans to constantly consume whatever is new regardless of quality. However the purging is at last at hand. The day of doom is here. The filth who have lied and corrupted the underground must be cleansed while the commendable elite few will remain.
Dutch black metal band Tarnkappe are streaming their entire upcoming Winterwaker album on Soundclound. Featuring members of Kjeld and Kaeck, Winterwaker is one of the Death Metal Underground staff’s favorite releases of the year: Tarnkappe summon back fond memories of early Gorgoroth, Zyklon-B, and Niden Div 187 refined into effective melodic narratives instead of merely another “cool riff” band aping Darkthone in pop punk songs, which is what Fenriz and Nocturno Culto have been doing themselves for well over a decade.
Dutch insurrectionary black metal band Tarnkappe has released both of its albums on CD as a bundle for those who appreciate black metal that stays true to the late-90s form of the band, which is equal parts later Darkthrone and Zyklon-B.